Saturday, May 28, 2016
Beyond the Attic Door, by Tracy Del Campo, is set in the year 1925, the year of "the Scopes' Trial." John Scopes, a school teacher, is on trial for teaching about evolution in the classroom. The topics of God and the Bible, and of course evolution, are being hotly debated throughout the land. Many people think the outcome of the trial will be the death of religion.
But for Lulu and her 7-year-old brother, Buddy, who were raised in a family with a firm belief in God, their beliefs are not being shaken by the trial. Actually, their faith is still very strong. They do believe in science but they don't believe in evolution; their beliefs are based on Bible truths.
When the children visit their grandmother for the summer, they come across a machine their uncle made. He has it hidden in Grandma's attic. Not knowing what it does, they accidentally trip the device and end up in the past, all the way back to Biblical times. Their uncle invented the machine so he could go back in time to witness a major Biblical event. With his camera in hand, he could then take pictures and bring them back with him to the present, so he could prove the Bible is true. Of course, his plans don't work out so well.
What I Like: I like how the author combines the ideas of evolution, the Scopes trial, and a time machine in one story.
What I Dislike: However, although the premise is a good one, the storytelling part falls short. It feels like the author is trying to do too much in the story in such a short format. Perhaps, if the book were longer, the ideas would have worked better. The way it is written, the story is a choppy and not quite believable.
Overall Rating: Good.
Age Appeal: 8-12.
Publisher Info: Westbow Press, 2014; ISBN: 9781490837079; Paperback, 90 pages, $11.95.